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J Cardiol. 2012 Sep;60(3):180-6. doi: 10.1016/j.jjcc.2012.03.003. Epub 2012 Apr 21.

Links between sleep disordered breathing, coronary atherosclerotic burden, and cardiac biomarkers in patients with stable coronary artery disease.

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Division of Cardiology, Nippon Medical School Chiba-Hokusoh Hospital, Chiba, Japan.



Sleep disordered breathing (SDB) is highly prevalent in patients with cardiovascular disease, although it is not clear whether SDB has any link to coronary atherosclerotic burden in patients with stable coronary artery disease (CAD). This study sought to analyze the links between SDB, coronary atherosclerotic burden, and cardiac biomarkers in stable CAD patients.


We studied 83 consecutive patients who underwent coronary angiography or scheduled percutaneous coronary intervention. SDB was evaluated by an ambulatory polysomnographic monitoring device. Coronary atherosclerotic burden was evaluated by the Gensini score, and myocardial stress/injury were assessed by measuring plasma levels of N-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) and high sensitivity troponin T (hs-TnT). Patients with an apnea hypopnea index (AHI)≧15 events/h (n=32) showed significantly higher Gensini score (35.7±38.0 vs 20.1±19.7, p=0.033) than those with AHI<15. The higher AHI group showed significantly higher NT-proBNP (275.8±402.6 pg/ml vs 131.9±146.3 pg/ml, p=0.047) and hs-TnT levels (0.011±0.005 ng/ml vs 0.008±0.003 ng/ml, p=0.015). Furthermore it was revealed that AHI significantly correlated with the Gensini score (r=0.253, p=0.036), NT-proBNP (r=0.266, p=0.027), and hs-TnT (r=0.274, p=0.023), and multiple stepwise linear regression analysis revealed that AHI (β=0.257, p=0.029) and history of smoking (β=0.244, p=0.038) were independently correlated with Gensini score among clinical and SDB-related parameters.


Severity of SDB has a significant link to the severity of coronary atherosclerotic burden, which also reflected elevated NT-proBNP and hs-TnT as silent myocardial ischemia and minute myocardial injury even in stable CAD patients.

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